Ashleigh Johnson

Ashleigh Johnson


Though only 26, and already an Olympic gold medalist and two-time world champion, Ashleigh Johnson is widely considered the best water polo goalie in the world, and perhaps the best ever. While she is proud of her athletic accomplishments, what truly inspires is her position as a role model in the African-American community. Johnson is the only Black athlete on all of Team USA Water Polo and one of very few in the world. Born and raised in Miami, Florida, with three brothers and a sister, she is the only member of Team USA not from California. A talented swimmer, she got into water polo simply because it was more fun than swimming laps. That turned out to be a fortuitous decision. She attended Ransom Everglades High School where she was a three-time state champion, then went on to Princeton University, where she became an All-American. In 2015, she led the Princeton Tigers to the NCAA tournament, then stepped away long enough to lead Team USA to the gold medal at the World Championships, where she was named MVP of the tournament. Since then, Johnson has remained one of the most dominant players in the world, winning The Pan Am Games, World Cups, multiple World Championships and Olympic gold, including the 2020 Games in Tokyo.